EHV-1 and the FEI rules – what you need to know

EHV-1 and the FEI rules – what you need to know
Views Equestrian Services

Equine Herpes Virus (EHV) is a contagious disease which can cause fever, respiratory problems and neurological issues in horses.

Following a series of outbreaks of EHV-1, the FEI introduced its “Horse Health Requirements” which aim to protect horses and prevent transmission of infectious diseases.

Unfortunately, in recent days, the FEI has confirmed cases of EHV-1 at Lier (Belgium) and Oliva (Spain).

We set out below what you need to know about the current confirmed cases in Europe and the Horse Health Requirements. 


EHV-1 in Europe (February 2023)

Due to the recent confirmed cases of EHV-1 in Europe, all horses attending Oliva from 7-22 February and some horses at Lier have been temporarily blocked from competition.

Horses blocked from competition due to EHV-1 cannot return to competition until they have fulfilled certain mandatory health requirements, including:

  • Isolation of at least 21 days;
  • Twice daily rectal temperature checks;
  • EHV-1 laboratory testing; and
  • Sign-off from a veterinarian.


Horse Health Requirements

Under normal circumstances, the relevant rules are as follows:

  • You must take twice daily temperature readings for every horse that attends an FEI Event and record these readings in the FEI HorseApp:
    • for three days before the day of arrival
    • every day while at the FEI Event (bring your own thermometer).

230224 EQ - EHV Article3.jpg

  • You must complete a Horse Health FEI Self-Certification form on the FEI HorseApp for all horses attending an FEI Event.



  • The Person Responsible for the horse (usually the rider of the horse at the event) will receive a sanction if they do not comply with the above temperature requirements.  
  • Specifically, you will be sanctioned if you fail to:
    • record any of the twice daily temperatures in the FEI HorseApp for the three days prior to the event. For example:

230224 EQ - EHV Article4.jpg

  • present a completed FEI Self-Certification Form on the FEI HorseApp at the examination on arrival.
  • record three or more consecutive temperatures in the FEI HorseApp while present at the FEI Event. For example:

230224 EQ - EHV Article5.jpg

  • record four or more temperatures in total (i.e. not necessarily consecutive) in the FEI HorseApp while present at the FEI Event. For example:

230224 EQ - EHV Article6.jpg

  • For the first two violations of this kind within a 12-month period, the Person Responsible receives a warning. For three or more violations, the sanctions increase as follows:

230224 EQ - EHV Article7.jpg


Authored by

Emma Waters
Senior Associate
Equestrian Services Team

Ellen Kerr
Trainee Solicitor 
Equestrian Services Team